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Beer (with images)


rustyjaw
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I like beer. Beer and games go together like, well, almost any alcohol and entertainment.

 

Over the years my taste in beer has meandered through all kinds of styles. Years ago I was really into porters and stouts. I had a thing for a beer from Redhook called "Double Back Stout" which had coffee in it (another of my favorite things in life). I got into Pale Ales for a while, but kind of burnt out on the ultra-hoppy thing. About the only kind of beer that I generally don't like is lagers, although there are a few good ones.

 

A few brews, though, have always stood out from the rest, regardless of my latest whim:

 

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My number one, all time favorite beer is Chimay. I don't drink it often, partly because it's so expensive. But OMG, is it incredible stuff, almost in a class by itself.

 

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Another all-time favorite is Spaten Franziskaner, a heffe-weizen with a fantastic creamy flavor. It's also on the sweet side.

 

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This is a local beer brewed here in SF by Anchor. This particular brew is only available during the holidays (it's a Wassail), I call it Christmas Ale. They change the recipe every year, although not dramatically. This is about as close as an American beer gets to Chimay, it's spicy, with a hint of ginger and nutmeg. LOVE it!

 

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Here's the label from the Double Black Stout mentioned above...'brewed with Starbuckes Coffee'

 

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Probably my favorite 'light' beer (light in flavor, not calories), Pilsner Urquell has such a clean taste, it's great for hot weather. I believe this is the original "pilsner" beer from Czechoslovakia.

 

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Another local, Redtail Ale is from the Hopland Brewery in Hopland, CA in the boonies in Northern California...about 3 hours north of SF. I once went on a brewery tour and this was among the ones I visited...

 

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Another I visited was Anderson Valley brewing, they make several beers including the Boont Amber, a really nice 'grainy' beer. Yum. And yes that's a bear with antlers on the front...

 

And finally, what am I drinking right now?

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A recent discovery from New Belgium in Colorado, Fat Tire Amber is another creamy, but not too 'thick' amber ale.

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I have spent a fair number of months in Australia over the past year, and there is a beer there that I just ADORE called Crown Lager. I couldn't drink enough of the stuff while I was there...unfortunately, it does not seem to be exported anywhere as far as I can tell. My kingdom for the person who tells me where I can buy this stuff here in the US, I have searched high and low. There are several other good Aussie beers as well.

 

Some of my other favorites I've discovered thus far are Bass, Fat Tire, Newcastle, Shiner Bock, various Heifweizens (sp?), Oberdorfer Weiss, Guinness, etc. Lately I have been hooked on the Negro Modello Especial...can't get enough of it recently.

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Originally posted by EdR@Oct 28 2003, 01:31 AM

I also like hefeweizens in general, great on a hot day with a lemon wedge, mmm.

That's the truth! I like to go to a local beer garden in the summer and sit outside sipping the wheat with a wedge of lemon. Very refreshing.

 

Ed's already doing it, but I'd encourage everyone to seek out their local brews.

 

Brand X might be better than Brand Y, but if Brand Y is fresher than X, you might be surprised at how your preferences change. Local beer allows helps you to get fresh beer and to support local craftsman.

 

My favorite locals are many Stoudt's Brewing beers (like their draft wheat during the summer and their Munich Gold any time) and some beers from Victory Brewing (especially the Victory Hop Devil).

 

As an aside, I know (knew?) the owner of the bicycle used as the model for the Fat Tire label. IIRC, he is the uncle of the people who make Fat Tire. He and his son now have a brewery in Port Washington, Wisconsin (Harbor City Brewing).

 

Here are two resources:

 

1. BeerAdvocate.com, awesome guides, ratings of beers, brewpubs, bars and so on. Really nice.

 

2. Beer Me's regional brewery guide

 

-j

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Hmm. Now I remember why I stick to boring things like MGD and Corona when I'm in the US.

 

On the subject of Real beer, I'm a big advocate for things like Adnams, Old Speckled Hen and Greene King. However, they don't travel, so me telling you that Proper O.S.H. from the Abingdon area is really good, but its either foul or indeed a completely different product if you buy it any further away from the brewery than, say, Jericho isn't terribly useful.

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Originally posted by merlot@Oct 28 2003, 07:51 AM

My favorites aren't too exotic:

 

and Yuengling Lager.

I just had a chance to try Yuengling for the first time last week when I was in PA. A very good beer.

 

One of the local places had a Yuengling Black and Tan on their menu as well. Very tasty.

 

Glen

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Originally posted by Robot Monkey+Oct 28 2003, 03:35 PM--></div><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (Robot Monkey @ Oct 28 2003, 03:35 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> <!--QuoteBegin-iainl@Oct 28 2003, 10:02 AM

Hmm. Now I remember why I stick to boring things like MGD and Corona when I'm in the US.

Why?

 

-j [/b]

Well, because while they aren't massively great, you know where you are with a basic bottled beer. There is certainly some weird and possibly wonderful beers on this thread, but I wouldn't know where to start, and British beers are very different in makeup to them. Urquell is always nice, though.

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Originally posted by iainl@Oct 28 2003, 11:02 AM

Well, because while they aren't massively great, you know where you are with a basic bottled beer.

Ah, the McDonald's Effect. ;)

 

Tell you what -- bookmark this thread for the next time you visit the Colonies. Tell us where you'll be and we'll share suggestions for top-notch local brews.

 

You can also get direction from what you already like. For example, if you like Pilsener Urquell, you might want to try Victory Pils the next time you're in the Philly area.

 

For my part, I try to concentrate on craft brews when I get the chance. This rules out beers from brewers like Sam Adams and Yuengling. It's not that they're so bad (on the contrary, they can be pretty tasty), but by gum sometimes I want to drink something special made by people who take a religious approach to brewing.

 

-j

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Hmm. Now I remember why I stick to boring things like MGD and Corona when I'm in the US.

 

I am a fan of Corona (w/ a lime of course), however, most big domestic brands, like Bud, Miller, etc... I can care less for. I took a Beer and Wine Tasting class back in college and we learned a bit of history and how the drinks are made. The problem with the beers I mentioned is that they remove the taste from it. Because certain batches can taste different, the big companies water down the taste so it remains consistant with each batch. How true this is, I don't know, but it's one of the things they taught.

 

As an aside, that class was great. We had to pay extra for the purchase of the beer and wine. Once class ended, I usually stuck around until the room emptied out, and took a few bottles with me that were left over... afterall, I did pay for it ;)

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Actually, Mike, that's only part of the story with mass market American-style light lagers.

 

I'm told that there's a huge cost savings involved, since they get two batches out of one. How? The big brewers use super yeast, capable of converting even more sugar into alcohol.

 

So say a beer is typically 5% alcohol (for the sake of argument). These guys brew it up with the super yeast (and any grain the get a hold of like rice) to 10%.

 

How does a single batch at 10% become two batches at 5%? Enter carbonated water. Now you have very little taste. And a crappy product.

 

In some ways, those beers are more difficult to brew. With so little taste, the slightlest off-flavor is magnified on your palate.

 

-j

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Originally posted by merlot@Oct 28 2003, 11:16 AM

I took a Beer and Wine Tasting class back in college...As an aside, that class was great. We had to pay extra for the purchase of the beer and wine. Once class ended, I usually stuck around until the room emptied out, and took a few bottles with me that were left over... afterall, I did pay for it ;)

Man, where did you go to school? I went to West Virginia University, a renowned party school, and we had nothing like that.

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Originally posted by Robot Monkey@Oct 28 2003, 11:50 AM

Actually, Mike, that's only part of the story with mass market American-style light lagers.

 

I'm told that there's a huge cost savings involved, since they get two batches out of one. How? The big brewers use super yeast, capable of converting even more sugar into alcohol.

 

So say a beer is typically 5% alcohol (for the sake of argument). These guys brew it up with the super yeast (and any grain the get a hold of like rice) to 10%.

 

How does a single batch at 10% become two batches at 5%? Enter carbonated water. Now you have very little taste. And a crappy product.

 

In some ways, those beers are more difficult to brew. With so little taste, the slightlest off-flavor is magnified on your palate.

 

-j

That about sounds like what they were teaching us. I do recall the "super yeast".

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merlot forgot to mention he failed that course.

 

:roll:

 

Acutally, I passed with a D :P

 

The problem was, I missed one week (course was once a week) and they had moved the written exam ahead by a week. When I got there the following week, I had no clue we had a final exam to take, so I was not prepared.

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Originally posted by EdR@Oct 28 2003, 02:31 PM

The problem was, I missed one week (course was once a week) and they had moved the written exam ahead by a week.

 

So was the exam to write the alphabet backward?

LOL!, I wish!

 

For starters, we had to know all the regions of France and what wines they produced... and that was the easier part :shock:

 

Everyones grade was solely reflected by this one exam we took. Too bad they didn't grade us on our alcohol tolerance though, I would have ace'd that baby! ;)

 

Hey, Mer-lott, I did my undergrad in Drexel's neighborhood!

 

U of Penn I assume? Going into the middle of that campus was like you were leaving the city. You could actually hear birds chirp. I visited the campus for haircuts and CD purchasing :)

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International: Hobgoblin

 

Had this a long time ago back in college (maybe 9 or 10 years back?). It was recommended to me when I asked the owner of the establishment (one of those places that showcases hundreds of beers from around the world) to suggest the flat-out best beer, regardless of cost. Without blinking, she said "Hobgoblin". The bottle has changed since then, but I expect that the beer is still good. From what I remember, fairly heavy with just a faint hint of chocolate. It's a beer brewed in England and is not commonly found in the States. You'd most likely have to find a distributor that deals with uncommon imports to buy it.

 

Hobgoblin_small.jpg

 

 

Domestic: JW Dundees Honey Brown

 

As for more local stuff, I'd say my preference is JW Dundee's Honey Brown. WAY smooth.

 

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  • 1 year later...

THREAD BUMP

 

Was going to start a beer thread and figured I wouldn't bother reinventing the wheel.

 

I have a self-imposed one-beer limit, but that one beer is usually along the lines of...

 

Stoudt's American Pale Ale - favorite beer right now. Far from wimpy but still has a respectable alcohol content. Very drinkable after it warms up too. (Stoudt's Gold, Scarlet Lady ESB, and Fest all get high marks too)

 

Samuel Adams Winter Lager - would be my favorite if it were year 'round. First beer I ever drank that I actually liked and not tolerated. Taught me that beer doesn't have to suck, which was a monumental achievement because the only beers I ever tried were Schlitz, Bud, Coors Light, and Miller Lite. (their other beers are tolerable but pale in comparison)

 

Heresy - by Weyerbacher. Take Old Heathen and let it sit for five months in oak barrels used for bourbon. Insane. Pour it into a glass and it's practically opaque black.

 

Hop Devil - by Victory. Their best beer by a landslide. Powerful and delicious. Nothing else they make comes close (not even Prima Pils - sorry, Jay!).

 

Humble Patience - by Magic Hat. It's a toss up between this and #9 as far as Magic Hat's best beer. Everything they make is good, and this one has a unique personaliy to it. Even if you don't like "fruit beers" it's worth a try. (Fat Angel and Blind Faith are also commendable but they all taste similar)

 

Guinness ? it's like drinking bread.

 

So what are the rest of you folks gonna be drinking as you pummel my sorry ass to oblivion playing Halo 2 this month? :D

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